This collection of bizarre historical factoids makes an enjoyable "coffee table" book that you can peruse when you feel like expanding your trivia repertoire. But don't expect anything too serious; despite being based on genuine historical documents, (according to the intro), this volume asks the questions that most history books omit, like: "Where is JFK's coffin?", "Which English king exploded?" or "Who was the `Bob' in `Bob's your Uncle'?" ... all answered with a dash of QI-style humour.
All quite good fun ... but, if humour IS the aim, then it might have been funnier. Educationally, it treads a fine line, trying to avoid reading like a school text book, yet not always giving quite enough relevant background information to satisfy. A difficult balance; mostly it manages - but it won't suit everyone's tastes.
Would make an ideal gift for: 1) People who like boring their friends with obscure facts and trivia, (there's one in every family). 2) School teachers, (might help them liven up their history lessons). 3) Pub quiz fanatics, (both potential "egg-heads" and those whose job it is to set the questions). 4) Anyone studying history at university, (preferably with a sense of the ridiculous).
Probably not ideal for: 1) Children. Instead, try the "Horrible Histories" books by Terry Deary, which are age-appropriate, divided into curriculum-friendly historical periods, and ... they're far funnier for kids!